Greenville Tea Party Draws 2,000 Protesters

2,000 protesters gathered on the banks of the Reedy River Friday evening for the Greenville Tea Party. Frustrated citizens joined Americans in more than 50 cities to decry the grotesquely irresponsible bailouts, pork, and ill-advised stimulus measures that are turning current and future generations into permanent federal piggy banks.

The rally organized by the Upstate Young Republicans was nothing short of inspirational.  I know that sounds sappy, but as a lifelong New Yorker, I’ve never seen that many Republicans in one place and honestly, it was kind of validating to see that they exist in real life, not just in the cesspools known as blog comment sections.  The turnout was incredible, dwarfing my expectations and those of the organizers.  Looking at the crowd estimates, it may have been the most well-attended of all the Tea Parties held Friday.

The ground was muddy, the sky overcast, the air humid, and no one seemed to care.

Here are photos of some of the protest signs (please excuse my ailing camera):

It’s gotta be a sweet tea party if you’re in Greenville, SC.

Welcome Back, Carter!

Elections have consequences.

Obamanomics: trickle up poverty.

Speakers electrified the crowd with talk of constitutional freedoms and personal responsibility, eliciting roars of agreement that could be heard blocks away. Rob and I listened to a young mother explaining the history of the Revolution to her daughter (accurately!) and watched fathers hoist their children into the air to wave flags and banners. Samuel Adams (and his reincarnation Rick Santelli) would be proud.

While the protesters were clearly unhappy with the usual suspects – Obama, Pelosi, and Reid – there was a particularly special place in their hearts for South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham. Chants of “Lindsey Don’t Care!” spread through the crowd as speakers criticized his earmarks in the most recent omnibus spending bill.

Mentions of our other South Carolina Senator, Jim DeMint, were met with wild rounds of applause. His consistent fiscal conservatism and hard-line stance against the bailouts has earned him hero status here in Greenville.

Even Ron Paul’s supporters were out in full force, gearing up for 2012 with updated campaign signs.

The highlight of the event, however, was when a speaker asked people under 30 to raise their hands so he could apologize to them for the generational theft taking place.  Since I turned 29 again this year, I joined right in and the only person who gave me a funny look was my husband.

Here are a few more photos of the crowd taken from the Main Street bridge:

And one final shot of the crowd rushing toward the river bank at dusk to toss in their tea:

Many of the protesters brought trash bags full of leaves in lieu of tea. I must have missed the memo – did they do that in other cities?

Local photographer Jenny Marie Brown has more photos of the Greenville rally.

Other Tea Party coverage (I’ll add to this round up over the weekend – leave your links in the comments):

Michelle Malkin’s Tea Party photo album

My friend Bill Hennessy covers the hugely successful St. Louis Tea Party he organized (1,000+ protesters)

Gateway Pundit has more on the St. Louis rally

America’s North Shore Journal has a multi-city round up

Dan at GayPatriot attended the LA Tea Party on Santa Monica Pier

The Denver Tea Party at Slapstick Politics

Video of the Atlanta Tea Party from Blue Star Chronicles

Great photos of the San Diego Tea Party from Christa at Cheat Seeking Missiles

And finally, to all the Tea Party naysayers who think this movement isn’t going anywhere (I’m lookin’ at you, Cavuto): it’s on.


38 Responses to “Greenville Tea Party Draws 2,000 Protesters”

  1. Angie Carrai on February 28th, 2009 10:49 am

    Hey, love your post on the Tea Party! Great job! I’m impressed that 2,000 citizens showed up to express their disgust with all that’s been happening in DC over the last 5 weeks.

    I was able to attend the DC protest on Friday and although Michelle Malkin and Joe the Plumber were there, only a couple hundred people showed up.

    I have a couple friends in Greenville, SC; Pastor Dan Atkins of Discover Church and his wife Laura and Dean Coursen the Children’s Pastor.

  2. The Tea Party Protests; an MSM Top Secret « The Political Inquirer on February 28th, 2009 10:53 am

    […] Diego, North Carolina, Nashville, Portland, Shelby – Greenville – Tulsa – […]

  3. David on February 28th, 2009 11:11 am

    I had a great time at the protest Friday, now let’s take this to Washington DC; March on Washington.

  4. Flow-Thru Afterglow | Hennessy's View on February 28th, 2009 1:38 pm

    […] Jenn Q Public was on hand for the largest protest in the country at Greenville, SC […]

  5. Bill Hennessy on February 28th, 2009 1:55 pm


    Congratulations to the folks of Greenville and surrounding areas. You had the biggest rally in the country according to Michael P. Leahy, president of TCOT.

    I urge everyone who attended or would have attended to make a daily journey. This is a movement aimed at about an 80 percent turnover of Congress in 2010. Don’t stop now.

  6. Patty on February 28th, 2009 3:18 pm

    Greenville rocks!

  7. SLJAM on February 28th, 2009 3:46 pm

    Leave it up to South Carolina!! First to succeed, last to surrender. Now let’s take out tar and feathers to D.C.!

  8. SLJAM on February 28th, 2009 3:47 pm

    Correction. Now let’s take our tar and feathers to D.C.!

  9. Thousands turn out for Greenville Tea Party | The Palmetto Scoop on February 28th, 2009 4:00 pm

    […] Greenville, more than 2,000 protesters gathered on the banks of the Reedy River to make their voices heard. That, I’m told, was the largest […]

  10. keepFreedomAlive on February 28th, 2009 4:00 pm

    Awesome. No taxation without representation. We The People have spoken and we will NEVER back down for our rights. You want our guns Obambi? COME AND TAKE EM!!! I WANT TO GO OUT LIKE A TRUE PATRIOT!!!

  11. Haire of the Dog | Charleston City Paper » Estimated 2,000 gather in GVille to litter on March 5th, 2009 2:12 pm

    […] an anti-stimulus package Tea Party along the banks of the mighty Reedy River. According to blogger Jenn Q. Public, some 2,000 folks came together to dump leaves (some tea and some apparently yard waste) in the […]

  12. St. Louis Tea Party » Blog Archive » Flow-Thru Afterglow on March 7th, 2009 7:31 pm

    […] Jenn Q Public was on hand for the largest protest in the country at Greenville, SC […]

  13. Freeman Shepherd on April 18th, 2009 6:30 am

    Knowing what I have learned up to this point, I had to make the effort (I live in Georgia and drive a truck – gone from home a lot)to be at the Bi-Lo Center Tea Party, April 17th, 2009.

    I’m glad I went, mainly because of Russ Castle.This guy has done his home work!

    Glenn Beck has it right also: It’s not about Republicans and Democrats, it’s about the Constitution, the principles this country was founded upon and the values that our countrymen hold dear as a God-fearing people.

    I realize that I’m a peon in the scheme of things, but if enough of Americans would educate themselves enough to see the need to stand- no matter what happens – then we might be able to slow the speed of events that is taking us all toward a facist, totalitarian and Godless system that is meant for our distuction.

    In “The Obama Deception”, a film by Alex Jones, the Bilderburg Group is identified as the top elitists that is in control of all the monetary chaos. This is a good documentary and everyone should take the time to see it. But, according to the book of Revelations in the Bible, there is a power more powerful than the Bilderburgers that is in control of the major world events. I said that to say this:


    Want to know the truth? Follow the Truth, the most high God, the One that will lead us into all truth.

    G. Freeman Shepherd
    Royston, Ga.

  14. Rob Taylor on April 18th, 2009 8:49 am

    I found Russ’ speech overlong and asinine. And since the Young Republicans set up the tea party I think it was classless to bash all Republicans, including telling DeMint to leave and join a third party.

    The gay jokes weren’t necessary either, but I guess all that stuff was in there for people like Shepherd. You now, suckers who buy what Alex Jones sells on the web?

    So Mr. Shepherd, if there is a vast and powerful conspiracy that kills everyone who stands in their way, as Alex Jones claims, why is Jones still alive after 20 years of exposing them?

  15. Liberal Jack on April 17th, 2010 11:02 am

    I can’t believe you people are surprised that there are 2,000 racist rednecks in South Carolina. What else do they have to do on a Friday night? Plus, I’m sure it reminds many of their glory days in the Klan.

  16. James on April 23rd, 2010 1:18 pm

    My Grandfather and I went to the tea party as well. Had a great time! If anyone knows of any photo galleries of the event other than the one on we’d really appreciate it you telling us about it. Email me at or buzz me over Yahoo! messenger.

    Thanks in advance! :-)

  17. James on April 23rd, 2010 1:23 pm

    You know what maybe I’d better be a little more specific. We went to the tea party at the Bi-lo Center on April 17th 2010. So if anyone knows anyone of any photo galleries aside from the one at email me or buzz me over Yahoo! messenger username is sword_of_truth133 .

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